Friday, April 13, 2018
Philipp Werner, Serge Clerckx and Henry de la Barre study Commission Expansionism in EU Merger Control – Fact and Fiction.
ABSTRACT: In recent years, against the backdrop of prominent economists, in particular, who are questioning the efficiency of competition law and calling for stricter and more effective merger control enforcement, the European Commission (‘Commission’) has gained a reputation for taking a tougher stance on enforcing EU merger control rules. This perceived interventionism derives from, among other factors, the high number of Phase II proceedings in the past years, a series of much-discussed prohibition decisions and tougher enforcement of procedural rules. In parallel to these elements, the Commission has also taken steps to assess whether to extend the scope of the EU merger control regulation (‘EUMR’), in view of enabling it to review (potentially problematic) types of transactions that might have evaded EU merger control review in the past.